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Research Reveals Disconnect

SEATTLE -- F5 Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ:FFIV - News), the global leader in Application Delivery Networking, today announced a recently commissioned Forrester Consulting study, The Impact of the WAN on Disaster Recovery Capabilities. Study results were compiled following a web-based survey of 504 companies with 1,000 or more employees in North America (200) and Europe (304), with the majority of participants reporting IT budgets ranging from $1 million to $100 million. Over 75 percent of respondents considered improving data recovery times and limiting data loss at a backup data center and remote sites critical, but many cited insufficient bandwidth as having a very strong impact on their ability to extend replication or remote backup data protection.

Survey results also showed that 63 percent of polled companies agreed or strongly agreed that their current bandwidth prevents them from extending replication or remote backup protection to remote sites. Yet at the same time, 82 percent agreed or strongly agreed that "improving time to recovery and limiting data loss without increasing bandwidth is important."

The 2007 study was commissioned by F5 to examine the impact of wide-area networks (WAN) on business continuity and disaster recovery (BC/DR), with the sample set made up of leaders of IT, enterprise architecture, and network operations. Participants were asked about their current BC/DR efforts--including Recovery Time Objectives (RTO), Recovery Point Objectives (RPO), and budget--as well as the effects of bandwidth constraints on data replication. The respondents indicated that BC/DR accounted for an average of 21 percent of their IT budget, with bandwidth accounting for 26 percent of total replication or remote backup costs.

According to Forrester Consulting, "Data loss at remote sites is currently a huge risk exposure for most enterprises...Before investing in additional bandwidth to support remote sites, improve the performance of existing replication technologies, or expand replication to other applications; (enterprises should) consider WAN acceleration offerings. When evaluating WAN acceleration appliances, focus on the vendors that have made the time and investment to test the interoperability of their appliance with independent software vendors, storage vendors, and storage networking vendors."

F5 Networks Inc.